Pengfei Zang, Kezzler’s director of presales and delivery in China, announced the expansion of its traceability technology to include high-value locally-produced watermelons and rice being produced at the government sponsored National Model Agricultural Industrial Park located in Hanting, Shandong. This follows the successful pilot for radishes produced in Weixian.
Anhui, the state-appointed agricultural company which runs the Park, focuses on using modern technology to upgrade quality and traceability. “We started working with RunHui on the radishes,” explained Zhang. “This was a success, so we are expanding this to also track two other famous local products – the Guo brand water melon and a unique species of rice called Seawater Paddy, cultivated to survive in seawater as the location is near the sea and normal varieties find it hard to survive.”
So far, all the products are high-end premium products as RunHui hopes to direct consumer sales via its web shop rather than through wholesale retailers. This can only be done if the products are positioned or valued as high-end items. “One of the major challenges in China, especially for premium products, is loss due to counterfeiting,” according to Zhang.
Kezzler’s technology includes the attachment of a unique ID to every product, for example, every watermelon. It uses a patented algorithm, called a DME (digital massive encryption), to produce many IDs quickly, to be used for serialization via QR codes, RFID, and others. Consumers can use WeChat to scan the packaging from their smartphone via a User Interface. This will also give them access to information about how the product was grown when it was harvested.
Zhang revealed plans to roll out the traceability platform next year for foreign fruit species grown locally, such as Japanese Grapes or American cherries. The company also hopes to work with other Parks (there are over 60) after they have perfected the process in Hanting.